Some important lessons for guitar players

Instead of notes, scales and chords, we’re talking about fretting hand position, picking hand positions, strap-height, stance and how you hold your head, neck and shoulders. All of these things affect what you can do on the guitar.

Great video by Alex Vollmer about how we interact with our guitar. There is a preview video available — you can buy the full video for $5.

  • adrianoconnor

    I’ve been wondering lately about how I position my left hand for playing barre chords. I can play a nice clean sound, but after about 10, maybe 15 minutes, the back of my hand starts to ache and if I keep playing I get pain down my wrist in to the forearm.

    I’m just sticking with it for now, changing things slightly and getting more and more used to it. If I’m still struggling in a few months, maybe I’ll come back and check out these videos 🙂

    • You might find it helps to get your wrist a little lower, which will mean changing the angle of the neck. One of the reasons I prefer playing standing up is that it’s a lot easier making these kinds of adjustments on the fly.

      • adrianoconnor

        Thanks for the tip. Do you mean by rotating the guitar away a bit, or more towards the floor? That is the kind of stuff I’m trying and, in fact, I’ve just bought a guitar strap for the first time ever (I got it about a month ago), and I’m finding I enjoy playing standing up far more than sitting down.

        • Imagine that where the guitar touches your stomach as a kind of axis. Rotate the guitar around that point so that the headstock is pointing a little more towards the ceiling. This will make it easier for your hand can get under the neck and won’t strain it quite so much.

          P.S. This is one of the topics covered in the lesson.